Supernova Condensate is a blog about our place in the Universe. Of astronomy, chemistry and life in the big bad bubble of academia.
Invader Xan is a molecular astrophysicist and part-time alien invader, who spends life looking at very small things on very large scales, and trying to better understand the chemistry of interstellar space.
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Tag Archives: molecules
Here’s an interesting fact. Oxygen is magnetic. You wouldn’t normally see this, being as it’s a colourless gas which we’re all constantly surrounded by. But if you cool it down so it becomes a liquid, you can actually catch liquid oxygen … Continue reading
I always enjoy good tea. This seems perfectly logical when you consider than I’m a British person living in Japan (apparently ocean island nations have a predisposition towards drinking tea). Interestingly though, it seems that tea is good for your … Continue reading
I have obtained permission from Haley Gomez to geek out over the internet about something in her talk at this conference today – which is possibly the most exciting thing I’ve ever seen at an astronomy conference! Specifically, none other … Continue reading
This week I discovered one of the most faintly hilarious things I have for some time. It’s a fairly common mistake in chemistry to mis-draw a structure so that a carbon atom appears to have five bonds. It’s a fairly … Continue reading
Just one more thing… Anyone who’s been camping will likely be familiar with the so-called “chlorine tablets” which can be used to purify water for drinking. Just so that we’re clear here, these tablets may contain a chemical compound which … Continue reading
Every now and again, I hear something which makes me so aghast that I really don’t know what to think. The so called “Miracle Mineral Solution” which I heard of today was exactly one of those things. Aghast, perhaps, but … Continue reading
Anyone who knows me will know that I love representations of molecules in popular culture. Because molecules are cool, and chemistry doesn’t get nearly enough geek love. This in particular, is a C60 fullerene, constructed from tibetan buddha beads made … Continue reading
What do oregano and tequila have in common? The answer is this stuff! Carvacrol is a monoterpenoid phenol which is the main aroma compound in oregano, causing that sweet and warm (if slightly pungent) aroma when you add a sprinkle … Continue reading
“Of course, this identification is simply wrong.” That one remark caused a subdued but audible commotion in the audience, and a handful of shocked responses to be posted on twitter. The remark in question had been made by Jacek Krełowski, … Continue reading